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Care Agency children’s services offers new out-reach programme to parents

The staff at the Family and Community Centre are extending its support to parents and carers during the Covid-19 lockdown by way of an out-reach service.

The team is comprised of trained parenting educators, social workers and therapists, who will be able to offer advice on different strategies that may help families build resilience. The team will also help to link those parents or children in need to other support services in the community.

In line with Public Health advice regarding the potential spread of Covid-19, one of the early measures taken by the Care Agency was the closure of the Family and Community Centre within Mid-Harbours Estate.

“As the lockdown rules continue, families have had to adjust and adapt their usual routines, which may not have been easy. As school and work-life have been “brought home” for many as a result of the lockdown measures, parents and their children are spending most of their time together under one roof for very long periods of time,” said a statement from the Government.

“Furthermore, many children and families have had to deal with not seeing their loved family members and friends face to face due to social distancing and isolation measures. Many families may be feeling the stress at home.”

“Whether it is establishing a good work and school routine, managing children’s’ behaviours, or managing the worries and stresses of confinement.”

“Keeping children occupied and entertained, while finding some adult time away from the sense of isolation may be hard,” the statement added.

The Family and Community Centre offers opportunities for families to reach out and receive necessary support. An additional helpline service has been set up to offer one-to-one support and advice to parents and those with parenting roles.

“The Care Agency is able to reassure parents that the staff team assigned to provide this support are dedicated, qualified professionals and trained in being able to offer parenting programmes,” said the acting chief executive of the Care Agency, Carlos Banderas.

“ They are focussed on connecting, empowering and promoting the strengths in families and aim to provide parents and those in caring roles further opportunities to discuss their concerns, needs or anxieties,” he added.

The Minister for Health and Care, Paul Balban recognised that families are facing are extremely difficult times and while not everyone will require this support, some may.

“I am conscious that children and families may need extra support during these challenging times, and would like to reassure the community, that the Care Agency remains committed to supporting families as much as possible during this period,” he said.

The Family and Community Centre Team can be contacted on telephone number 20046386 from Monday to Friday, between the hours of 8.45 – 4.30 p.m., or on 20042448 after working hours.

Alternatively, the team can be contacted by email to familycentre@careagency.gov.gi